After experiencing everything England had to offer this Christmas (including mince pies, crackers, flaming puds, and a mild strain of flu), I am left in this flat wondering what now?
It has snowed about five inches, which is a very exciting topic for a lot of people and sparks numerous news reports, school closures and travel delays, and entire conversations. Apparently I happen to be in England during the Winter Of Our Discontent. Epic weather that they make TV movies out of.
Really the effect it has had is: it is too cold for me to give a damn about going outside, I am wearing my wellies more often, I want soup. Lots of canned soup. I have been scanning Beeton for some good winter recipes and will probably give a try soon. As for now, a can of clam chowder is good enough for me.
So Mrs. Beeton, what must one do when feeling stalemated by the cold and snow? Here is her domestic advice for last month:
In December, the principal household duty lies in preparing for the creature comforts of those near and dear to us, so as to meet old Christmas with a happy face, a contented mind, and a full larder; and in stoning the plums, washing the currants, cutting the citron, beating the eggs, and MIXING THE PUDDING, a housewife is not unworthily greeting the genial season of all good things.
Hmm. Ok. First of all, I didn't do any of that in December. Secondly, I don't know why MIXING THE PUDDING is in all caps, but I will guess that it is extremely important and to hammer this home, Mrs. Beeton is shouting at us.
But the important thing is: what now?
Beeton makes no mention of winter activities, except that servants will be making a lot of fires. And I should probably be enjoying all of the preserves and pickles I prepared this summer.
I guess it's time to get to cookin'. I don't have any preserves or pickles anyway.